The archaeological program at Colonial Michilimackinac had an exciting find the morning of June 18, a brass trade ring.

“The archaeology team had a nice find yesterday morning, a brass trade ring,” reported Dr. Lynn Evans, Curator of Archaeology for Mackinac State Historic Parks. “Although these rings are sometimes referred to as “Jesuit Rings,” by the eighteenth century they were strictly secular trade goods. The ring was found in the 1781 demolition rubble over the north porch.”

The current excavation site is House E of the Southeast Rowhouse at Colonial Michilimackinac. Numerous exciting finds have been made at the site in recent years, including a Compagnie des Indes lead seal dating between 1717 and 1769, a brass sleeve button with an intaglio bust on it, a potential structural post dating to the original 1715 fort, another engraved “Jesuit” trade ring, a brass serpentine sideplate for a British trade gun; complete remnants from a creamware plate; a bone or ivory gaming die; and many other items. The archaeological dig at Michilimackinac began in 1959, making it one of the longest running archaeology programs in North America. House E was first occupied by Charles Henri Desjardins de Rupallay de Gonneville, and later by an as-yet-unidentified English trader.

Colonial Michilimackinac is a reconstructed fort and fur trading village located just west of the Mackinac Bridge. Costumed interpreters provide demonstrations and tours throughout the day, and active archaeology takes place during the summer months. More information on the site can be found by clicking here.

Support for Mackinac State Historic Parks programs comes from Mackinac Associates, friends preserving and sharing Mackinac’s heritage. Archaeologists are working in the fort, daily, through August 17, weather depending.